Mail-in ballots started going out to all registered voters in the state this week. However, more than 2,000 people received a ballot that does not allow them to vote for president.
According to the L.A. County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office, some 2,100 residents in the Woodland Hills area received ballots that contained state propositions twice but skipped the presidential portion entirely. Oops!
Woodland Hills resident Christy Gargalis made a post about her faulty ballot on Facebook and advised others to check their own as well. Gargalis also shared a screenshot of an email she received from the Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office stating that a new ballot was on the way and encouraging anyone who received a faulty ballot to discard it.
Anyone who may have filled and mailed out a faulty ballot need not worry. According to a spokesman for the county clerk’s office, any defective ballots already mailed in will be replaced with the correct one once it’s received — though it’s hard to imagine filling out an entire ballot and not realizing you hadn’t voted for the next U.S. president in one of the most contentious elections ever.
Supposing replacement ballots are sent without incident, this mix-up is seemingly solved. But in an election already fraught with conspiracy theories, it’s not ideal.
This is the first year that all registered voters in California will receive mail-in ballots, accounting for over 21 million of these things currently making their way through the postal system. More than any other state in the U.S., according to the Los Angeles Times, and they must all be mailed no later than 29 days before the election. This may be a massive undertaking, but it’s also the first year we’ve had to worry about a pandemic on Election Day.